Practicing Empathy #1-2
“Practicing Empathy” is the title of a year-long research project initiated by the Yasmeen Godder Company, out of which a series of practices, performances, workshops and community interactions will be developed. Each of these actions will explore the notion of empathy through a variety of perspectives and approaches, questioning what opens us up emotionally. What makes us identify and connect with others, as well as with ourselves, when given a safe space to explore within? And how can we create new practices, rituals, songs and choreographies, which may open up our ability to witness and respond to the needs of others?
Since 2015, the Yasmeen Godder Company has been researching the notion of emotional connectivity between strangers as well as within communities. Each of these themes were approached as societal phenomena via the art of performance, using the dance medium’s codes and pre-conceptions as starting points for exploration.
“Practicing Empathy #1“ focuses on the relationship and connectivity of the performers as they delve into a score of repetitive physical and vocal rituals, which exposes their inner emotional landscapes. They play with creating an environment where empathy can be explored as a way to support, encourage, and react to the depth and complexity of their own and other‘s needs and expressions.
“Practicing Empathy #2“ will shift the focus from the performers to the audience and look at what arises when the experience on stage is shared with others. The quest in this journey will be a collaborative search for collective and infectious practices that disarms fears and invites the public to join the performers.
The Yasmeen Godder Company has begun the research for Practicing Empathy #2 with people who are living with Parkinson‘s Disease and who have been dancing at the Yasmeen Godder Studio on a weekly basis since 2015. The company has also created a new workshop series with mothers of children attending the Hand in Hand Community (Jewish-Arab school) in Jaffa, Israel. The process will continue internationally with communities in Germany and Italy, where Yasmeen Godder has had ongoing artistic relationships and multiple encounters with the local communities.
Co-production: Tanzhaus nrw and in collaboration with CSC - Centro per la Scena Contemporanea